Chin Surgery

Symmetrical faces, those with even and well-defined features, are considered more beautiful. When a person has a soft jawline, weak chin, or a chin that is too strong, it can lessen a person’s attractiveness. A solution to this problem is chin surgery. Also known as mentoplasty and genioplasty, chin surgery is often paired with nasal surgery, which can provide a more balanced profile.

Choosing Chin Surgery

Before chin surgery, patients are examined and get a thorough explanation of the procedure. This will include medical imaging tests, such as X-ray, to get a clearer picture of the chin structure. Doctors may also order facial photographs and analysis, lateral soft tissue and cephalometric studies, occlusal panoramic radiography, or anteroposterior skull radiography testing.

Many patients are looking for aesthetic changes to their face for such things as an overly prominent chin. Some people need to correct a medical condition. They may have a facial abnormality from birth or one that has developed over time or is the result of trauma. These cases may get a chin procedure known as orthognathic surgery, which can improve both form and function for the lower part of the face.

Chin Surgery UCI Head Neck - Chin Surgery
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The Procedure

Chin surgery falls into two categories: implants (or augmentation) and reductions. With augmentation, the physician makes an incision either inside the mouth where the lower lip meets the gums or just under the chin in the natural crease line. The tissue is gently stretched to create an opening large enough to insert an implant. Made of synthetics, the implant has a similar feel to the natural tissue inside the chin, and it comes in multiple shapes and sizes to allow custom fitting to match the patient’s face. Once inserted, fine sutures are used to close the incision.
Scarring is usually undetectable with under chin incisions, and it is not visible for incisions made inside the mouth.

Surgeons follow a similar path with chin reductions, making an incision inside the mouth or under the chin. Through the opening in the skin, the doctor sculpts the chin bone, making it a smaller size that the patient finds more appealing. For those patients undergoing orthognathic surgery, the surgeon makes an incision inside the mouth and repositions facial bones. Chin surgery may include submental liposuction to remove excess fatty tissue, which can help redefine the shape of the chin and neckline. Surgery time varies by the type of procedure performed. Some surgeries are as short as 15 minutes, while others may last close to two hours.

Recovery

After chin surgery, doctors usually apply bandages that are removed in two or three days. Patients typically feel facial tenderness, as well as a tight or stretched feeling. Expect these symptoms to fade within a week. Swelling may last about six weeks. Doctors usually prescribe medicine for pain and a soft food or liquid diet for the first few days following surgery. Patients may be advised to rinse with a saline solution frequently between the end of surgery and the first follow-up exam.

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